Motorola has turned in a strong of third quarter results, buoyed by a successful series of product launches by its handset division.
The vendor turned in sales of $8.6 billion for the quarter, a 26% rise on the year. Operating earnings jumped from $263 million last year to $718 million, while net earnings were $479 million, up from last year’s $116 million. This delivered earnings per share of $0.20, a penny better than analysts expected.
Motorola expects fourth quarter sales to hit $9.3 billion to $9.6 billion, with earnings per share of $0.23 to $0.26, including special items of $0.03 per share. Current analyst expectations are for $0.24 per share on sales of $9.52 billion.
The biggest contributor to the performance was Motorola’s personal communications segment, which reported sales of $3.9 billion, up 34%, and operating earnings of $390 million, compared to $147 million last year. Motorola cited the successful launch of new products, and said it shipped 23.3 million handsets in the quarter, up 15% on the year.
Motorola’s semiconductor business – in the process of being spun-off as Freescale Semiconductor – turned in sales of $1.4 billion, up 17%, while operating earnings were $82 million, compared to a $76 million loss a year ago.
Sales at Motorola’s global telecoms solution business were $1.3 billion, up 24%, while operating earnings increased from $61 million last year to $175 million.
Commercial government and industrial solutions showed sales of $1.2 billion, up 12%, while operating earnings were $185 million, compared with the previous year’s $146 million. Motorola said the unit’s performance reflected government expenditure on homeland security and corporate spending on business critical communications.
Integrated electrical systems turned in earnings of $18 million on sales of $683 million, while Motorola’s broadband products business saw sales of $589 million with operating earnings of $34 million.